Hell's Highway: The True Story of Highway Safety Films
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- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 1 hours, 31 minutes
- Video: Black & White / Color
- Released: October 28, 2003
- Originally Released: 2003
- Label: Kino Video
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- 1 Disc
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Additional Release Material:
- Deleted Scenes
- Three Complete Driver's Education Short Films:
- SIGNAL 30 (1959)
- HIGHWAYS OF AGONY (1969)
- OPTIONS TO LIVE (1979)
- Excerpts From Additional Films, Including:
- MECHANIZED DEATH (1961)
- WHEELS OF TRAGEDY (1963)
- CARRIER OR KILLER (1965)
- DEATH ON THE HIGHWAY (1965)
- THE THIRD KILLER (1966)
- Text/Photo Galleries:
- Image and Document Gallery
Performers, Cast and Crew:
|Directed by||Bret Wood|
Rating: A -- This not-for-the -squeamish documentary will definitely make you think twice about not buckling up. Full Review
...Documentarian Bret Wood renders it sympathetically...
Rating: 4/4 -- The interviews with Prelinger are especially smart, discussing the ideological agendas frequently lurking in 'educational' materials. Full Review
Christian Science Monitor
How effective were the highway safety films in stopping accidents? Opinions differ. How effective is Hell's Highway in curing you of ever wanting to see another one? Completely. Full Review
Film Journal International
An unfunny comedy and somewhat murky exposé.
Rating: 3/5 -- Oddly nostalgic. Full Review
Rating: 3/5 -- Someday, perhaps, someone will make a documentary of Volvo commercials and Consumers Union test-drive videos, but I doubt it will be as unnerving -- or as much fun -- as Hell's Highway.
New York Times
In 1960, accountant Richard Wayman and photographer Phyllis Vaughn started the Cleveland-based Highway Safety Foundation after amassing a sizeable collection of photos taken at auto crash sites and shooting an educational film, SIGNAL 30, which incorporated crash site footage. The Foundation's film production wing, Safety Enterprises, went on to produce a number of now-legendary auto safety films (including WHEELS OF TRAGEDY and MECHANIZED DEATH) incorporating extremely grisly real-life imagery, which were shown to unsuspecting high school students across the United States in the 1960s and 70s. Bret Miller's documentary takes a probing look into the strange story of the people who made these bizarre and haunting films. He includes interviews with genre experts such as educational film archivist Richard Prelinger and Something Weird Video's Mike Vraney, as well as Earle Deems and John Domer--two of the men who worked on these compelling curiosities. While the subject matter is sensationalistic by nature, Miller's approach is reverent, and, though the films have passed on into the land of pop cultural legend, one is never doubtful that those who made the films did so out of a well-intentioned sense of duty and purpose.
Educational | Documentary | Police | Theatrical Release | Crime | Film About Film | 1960s | Crashes | Archival Footage | Education
- Theatrical Release: JUNE 27, 2003 (NY)
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